Many the the details that the Popham nest have been lost to, but in the heyday the tiny settlement in Maine was considered a direct rival of Jamestown. Both colonies got their begin in 1606, as soon as the brothers King James i granted the Virginia agency a charter to create permanent settlements in the brand-new World. Two different factions of the Virginia Company—one based in London and one in Plymouth—immediately started planning expeditions to the shore of phibìc America. The London company was tasked through colonizing the more southerly section that had the contemporary day says of Virginia and North Carolina, while the Plymouth agency was provided reign end a swath the what is now new England. Come foster competition in between the two future colonies, a neutral center ground was set aside because that whichever settlement proved healthy enough to case it.

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The rival operations to be Britain’s very first serious attempt to clear up the new World due to the fact that the loss of the fabled “lost colony” the Roanoke in the 1580s, and also they generated far-reaching excitement and investment. In mid-May 1607, the London firm won the gyeongju to phibìc America once it landed settlers in Virginia and established the jamestown colony. Just a couple of weeks afterwards May 31, the Plymouth company expedition collection sail in the pearls Gift the God and also the Mary and John, bound for the chilly shore of Maine. The all-male operation consisted of 120 sailors, soldiers, carpenters, merchants and also farmers. George Popham, a nobleman and relative of the mr Chief justice of England Sir man Popham, offered as the group’s leader. His second-in-command to be Raleigh Gilbert, a headstrong 25-year-old that was a nephew of sir Walter Raleigh.


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Following a two-month cross of the Atlantic, the exploration reached Maine in respectable 1607 and also dropped anchor at the mouth the the Kennebec River, then recognized as the Sagadahoc River. After ~ listening to a sermon by your resident preacher, lock selected a clues for your “Popham colony” close to the modern day city of Phippsburg. During the next few months, the colonists damaged ground on a star-shaped bastion well-known as fort St. George and worked tirelessly to construct a settlement. A colonist named John Hunt would certainly later attract a map of the fledgling city showing many houses and a church, a storehouse and also several protective walls guarded by cannons. The Popham residents also began fashioning a ship from local timber and also sails and iron castle had lugged from England. The 50-foot pinnace, later christened the Virginia of Sagadahoc, was the very first British vessel created in phibìc America.

Popham colony had been established primarily as a trading settlement, but its at an early stage interactions through the seaside Indians bore little fruit. Many of the regional Algonquian-speaking bands were leery that the strangers, and their suspicions only thrived after Gilbert and some that his men nearly came come blows with a team of warriors throughout an test parlay. George Popham however remained convinced that his nest would flourish. As soon as the Mary and also John and also the Gift of God returned to England in late-1607, he sent out along a letter come King James ns in which that said, “the natives continuous affirm that in these components there are nutmegs, mace and also cinnamon…with numerous other products of great importance and also value.” Popham also reported rumors the a large body of water just a few days’ trip to the west. The speculated this was the Pacific Ocean and also the path to China, “which unquestionably can not be much from this parts.”